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MLK Day of Service Project 

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By: Liz Gramlich, Lions Eye Staff Editor, eag5283@psu.edu

Penn State Brandywine teamed with The Giving Garden Food Pantry & Community Garden to commemorate Martin Luther King, Jr.

On January 19, Brandywine students aspired to get involved with the community and start a tradition of a community service project on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.  King was an asset to his own community, and the world, that Brandywine Student Affairs personnel thought this would be an insightful way to commemorate all that he did.

Student leaders Ryan Stone, Paul Alberici, Luke Burdsall, Elisabeth Gramlich and advisor Stephanie Jones worked together on this community service project. They drove to Foundry Church in the Brandywine community and were greeted by enthusiastic members, all there for the same cause. Their goal was to create food packages for those who were in need.

The Brandywine students and adviser split up into two groups. One group was in charge of checking food to make sure that it was not expired nor damaged. The other group was in charge of packaging foods for families and students in need. Throughout the day they checked hundreds of food items and put together about 80 packages for families in the community.

Those who visit the pantry are primarily single mothers and college students. It may be hard to think that by doing these tasks it can make an impact on families, but it really does. Families are relieved that they have a helping hand supporting them and helping them out. One thing I learned is that many college students have problems with not eating correctly or not enough, because that is the one cost that they can control. With paying for tuition and other bills, it leaves little room for food. This cause helps people across the Delaware County by supplying them with food and nourishment.

The Giving Garden Food Pantry & Community Garden is located at the Foundry Church. They collect and give to the community all year long. Students can help by volunteering, planning a food drive, or sponsoring. The Food Pantry is open on Fridays 4- 6 p.m. and is open to those in need.

“The fact that the people there were so caring was very touching,” Stone said.  “We walked in there as complete strangers but they treated us like they had already known us”.

King was a selfless leader and was an inspiration to others. There was not a better way to honor him then by participating in a day of community service. Student Affairs set up this event in the community to accomplish this task. It was a great day to give time and efforts to help others on, not just a day off of school, but a day to commemorate a great man.

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